Tactics & Strategies For the Battle of Communications
INTRODUCTION BY PATRICE GREANVILLE
For most of its history the US left has neglected or been incapable of developing a robust independent media apparatus of its own. By “left” I do not mean the centrist liberals, especially Democrats, who have almost somnambulistically co-opted the label “leftist” and have their own viewpoint amply represented throughout the corporate machine as well as supposedly “public venues (NPR, etc.), their ludicrous usage of the word ironically validated by too many ignorant and fanatical rightwingers for whom any form of state intervention is tyranny and both liberaloids and true radicals are dumped in the same shredder reserved for “leftists”.
Obviously there are a number of reasons for the left’s failure to develop a significant media presence, including the fact that as all politics is rooted in class interest, the richest segments of the population are always better positioned to support political currents, leaders, media assets, and movements that mirror their policy preferences and do their bidding. However, there are also powerful cultural and historical factors multiplying the effects of sheer money.
As an anti-intellectual, can-do kind of country, American radicals have been notorious for their culturally-implanted impatience, which explains some of their voluntarism and the propensity to see the struggle against capitalism chiefly as a series of pushbacks against urgent separate symptoms, without ever concentrating forces to eliminate the roots of the malignancy itself. This approach has consumed (and continues to consume) a great deal of grassroots activism, with most radicals often acting like a fire brigade perennially rushing out to put out the latest fires set up by the arsonist in chief, the capitalist system lodged at the very core of American society.
This poisoned dynamic has distracted the left and created something of a self-perpetuating circle of inefficiency and defeat in political contests with the established order. Indeed the left—ridiculously undermanned and underfunded to begin with—has often acted like a general always ready to march his army into battle without first developing the tactical and strategic weapons necessary to fight and win such a war. But when we talk about war with the criminal and essentially illegitimate corporate status quo what kind of weapons are we talking about? Not guns, for sure, certainly not at this point when the public consciousness remains badly confused and leaderless, with most disaffected folks coopted by the faux left, particularly the Democrats and their satellites, and the faux right (Trump being the current demagogic incarnation of the phenomenon.). Guns, of course can never be ruled out a priori in a revolutionary process, as they always come into play when the ruling orders jump to defend their interests by drowning the revolutionaries in their own blood. History shows two irrefutable things: One, the “Left” is born out of the accumulated crimes and abuses of the Right. Thus, the Right, the established order, is always the progenitor of the Left. If they look upon the Left as a curse and lethal threat, that’s too bad, they created it. Two, in almost all cases recorded by history, it was the established order’s heavy “pre-emptive” repression which unleashed the generalized bloodshed, and the social violence that followed.
Fight the propaganda battle and win it!
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